When you think of this team, you primarily think of Carmelo Anthony as the team’s offense. That has always been the case (save for a brief period of Linsanity) for any team that ‘Melo has been a part of. And then, of course, you have J.R. Smith, who is known as volume-shooter number two on the team. So you have to figure that when Tyson Chandler is calling out the team’s lack of ball movement, there can only be so many that he may be referring to. Frank Isola of Daily News has details:
“Honestly, we’re doing it to ourselves,” Chandler said on Sunday. “I watched the tape myself and there are open looks. We have to be willing passers. You have to sacrifice yourself sometimes for the betterment of the team and for the betterment of your teammates. So when you drive in the paint and you draw, you kick it. I think we need to do a better job of allowing the game to dictate who takes the shots and not the individuals.”
“I’m not saying anyone is doing it maliciously,” Chandler said on Sunday. “I think it is more so you get into a situation where you want to take over the game or you want to make a big shot where you (should) stick to the game plan. A good team wins basketball games. Unless you’re a great, great, great, great individual … and we only have a few of those come through.”
Perhaps thinking Chandler was referring to him, Anthony says he plans on having a talk with the center, from Isola:
Chandler also could have spoken a bit out of frustration, as he never really got a chance to redeem himself on the offensive end when Roy Hibbert was constantly attacking him:
“It’s definitely frustrating,” said Chandler, who had nine points and five rebounds in 30 minutes. “It’s frustrating to have someone go at you on one end and not have the opportunity to go back at him. But that being said, their offense is run through him and that can be a positive for us if we play it correctly. Last night, we didn’t play it correctly and because of it we were exposed.”
Whatever the reason may be for what Chandler said, the center has a point. The Knicks are down 2-1 in their series against the Indiana Pacers. In the two losses, they failed to move the ball consistently and had 26 combined assists. In the decisive Game 2 victory, they had 20 assists.
For the most part, New York has been there on the defensive end, limiting the Pacers to a combined 161 points in the last two contests. For them to regain control of the series, however, they will have to start trusting each other more on the offensive end rather than over-relying on the streaky shooting of Anthony and Smith.
Onto other news from around the league:
- Kevin Durant believes Serge Ibaka has to win the mind game within himself, from Ramona Shelburne of ESPN Los Angeles: “Defensively, Ibaka has been solid, as always. But offensively, he’s lost right now. The two wide-open dunks he clanked off the rim Saturday are just the most visible symptoms of the issue that has seemed to snowball on itself since he missed a putback in Game 4 of the Houston series. ”We have to get him confidence,” Durant said of Ibaka. “We have to get him some shots and get him going. We can’t let him put too much pressure on himself. It’s all in his mind. If he thinks he’s going to make those shots, he’s going to make them. ”He missed a few blocks, a few layups and a few open jump shots. I have to pick him up, and that’s what I’ve been doing.”